Spray for Sympathy

September 13, 2010

Torah Kachur

What can make a grown man cry? 


1)  A date with Megan Fox


2)  Gold medal hockey tickets


3)  Dead Poet's Society


And, a shot of nasal spray.


Researchers have found that a nasal spray containing the hormone oxytocin can increase feelings of empathy in men.  After exposure to oxytocin, men were asked to express their feelings after viewing emotionally charged images.  The researchers found that they men that were treated with the hormone had higher empathy as measured by the Multifaceted Empathy Test.  I think a positive result of this test was to get men to talk about their feelings at all, let alone measure them.


Oxytocin is a little hormone that is best known for its role in triggering uterine contractions during labour.  It is also released in the woman during breast feeding, that release is thought to help emotional bonding of mother with child.  It is also thought to help emotional bonding between sex partners if, and only if, the female has an orgasm.  If it doesn't already sound like a pretty awesome hormone - orgasms and emotional bonding - it also plays a role in the male erection - rats that have oxytocin injected into the brain get a spontaneous erection (without any hot lady-rats around).


A few newer claims of the power of oxytocin are coming out of the woodwork too - everything from a treatment for autism to differentiation of heart muscles.  So, you can not only grow your man a heart, you can make him use it too. 




Where can you get some?  Obviously, private companies are getting in on the action - oxytocin nasal spray is available on the web for purchase.  Before you place your order for a crate, stop and think for one you really need to chemically alter your partner to get him or her to bond?  Because if you do, I'm not sure if a nasal spray is really the help you need.


Note:  This is not to be confused with the drug oxycontin, please don't sniff that.



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